Australia’s new restricted migration visa rules: serf’s up!

Despite being largely immune from the economic woes that afflict flyover America and northern England, Australia is by no means immune from the present worldwide levels of hysteria about migrants taking our jerbs. We also have a struggling centre-right Prime Minister, who is beseiged by the far-right headbangers who dominate his party (and, to a … Continue reading Australia’s new restricted migration visa rules: serf’s up!

Don’t believe the 500 million quid passport story until you see it on the side of a bus

The UK's worst tabloids are running today on the Glorious Brexity News that the government is planning to spend £500 million on returning British passports to their former glory - changing them from the wicked EU's suspiciously French-sounding burgundy to good traditional English blue/black. The interesting thing about the £500m passport change story is not that it's … Continue reading Don’t believe the 500 million quid passport story until you see it on the side of a bus

Depends on how foreign your Aberdeens are

I did a thing at Citymetric on the interesting way folks are completely happy for Scottish companies to run the railways in southern England, but lose their minds when Hong Kong companies do the same thing. My favourite self-quote: The RMT, famous for being the least sensible or survival-oriented union in the UK since the National … Continue reading Depends on how foreign your Aberdeens are

The Corbyn Effect, or ‘you’re nobody til everybody hates you’

There were a couple of by-elections in the UK this week, both in traditionally-safe-ish Labour seats. Normally in the sixth year of Conservative government, this would be a boring event that nobody cared about: a medium-strength opposition wins government seats at by-elections (even if, as with Labour under Neil Kinnock pre-1992 and under Ed Miliband … Continue reading The Corbyn Effect, or ‘you’re nobody til everybody hates you’

Still, that railway, from the south

Southern's parent company know that they're in the G4S bracket of mean thugs. The government know it, and that's what they're for.  The RMT know it, and fighting them is their job.  The non-union marketing people at Southern, who are probably your nice mates, don't. This is unfortunate. Me at the New Statesman

The future, and other things I have no idea about

I've not been blogging here a lot lately. Partly because I've been doing that horrible thing known as "working for money and trying to forget", partly because now that Facey and Insty exist, there's no real need to stick amazing holiday photos up here, and partly because Brexit has completely fucked up my predictions and … Continue reading The future, and other things I have no idea about

Southern Railway, now arriving in 1973

I did a piece at Citymetric on why the disastrous shenanigans at Southern Railway are actually a resumption of a very old battle. They paid me a lot less than a Southern Railway guard gets for the same hours. I probably enjoyed it more, though. Image: an EMD E6A leading the US Southern Railway's The Tennessean … Continue reading Southern Railway, now arriving in 1973